Spine for a Spine: Saudi Judge Seeks Doctors To Paralyze Defendant Under Sharia Law

We have a new outrage produced by the Sharia courts. This one comes from Saudi Arabia where a judge sees no reason why he should stop at “an eye for an eye” when he might be able to order a spine for a spine. “Judge” Saoud bin Suleiman al-Youssef asked hospitals to inform him of whether they can perform an operation to paralyze the man.

The judge in northwestern Tabuk province asked hospitals for assistance in paralyzing a man in an operation as punishment for his paralyzing of a man two years ago. One hospital has already responded that such an operation is possible — apparently dismissing issues under the Hippocratic Oath.

Abdul-Aziz al-Mutairi, 22, was paralyzed and lost a foot after a fight more than two years ago with the defendant. Notably, the defendant already was sentenced to up to 14 months in prison, but was released after seven months in an amnesty. He is now a professor at a university. The family returned to court to demand the right of “an eye for an eye” as guaranteed under Sharia law.

Source: Yahoo and USA Today

21 thoughts on “Spine for a Spine: Saudi Judge Seeks Doctors To Paralyze Defendant Under Sharia Law”

  1. “An eye for an eye and the whole world is blinded.” Gandhi

    Scarecrow, maybe I am misreading you but I fail to see the relevance of quoting OT horror punishments that neither Jews nor Christians have practiced since 100 BCE.

    As for the Hippocratic Oath, my guess is that the Mullahs have opined that Sharia law trumps the oath, which oath was formulated by an ancient Greek Kafir.

  2. “In those instances the socially responsible and just thing to do is to make the victim as whole as possible at the expense of the perpetrator without creating a further undue burden on society as a whole.”

    you are truly wise Mr. Laughing Buddha

  3. JT – Where is the suggestion box that has been suggested?

    Anyway, news of security procedure “enhancements” from the TSA in Boston and Las Vegas.

    The government will not stop this progression until random strip searches and interrogations can be ordered. No doubt these will include children. Why shouldn’t the government require travelers to pre-file for permission to fly, so background checks can be done? Not far off either.

    New Logan searches blasted: TSA tests frisky frisking policy

    Logan airport security just got more up close and personal as federal screeners launched a more aggressive palms-first, slide-down body search technique that has renewed the debate over privacy vs. safety.

    The new procedure – already being questioned by the ACLU – replaces the Transportation Security Administration’s former back-of-the-hand patdown.

    A TSA spokeswoman yesterday confirmed the switch to what the agency calls an “enhanced patdown.”

    … the searches will be done using all front-of-the-hand sliding motions over greater areas of passengers’ bodies, including sensitive areas…

    If there is no full-body scanner at a security checkpoint, passengers go through a metal detector and are subjected to a body search if the alarm sounds. The TSA also subjects random passengers to body searches.

  4. “Simply blinding the perpetrator would be so much quicker and easier.”

    Which leads directly to the problem of using a parable about parity as justice as a literal guideline. The literal interpretation of “an eye for an eye” leaves everyone blind, thus doubling the cost to society as a whole because now you have two people who require assistance instead of one. As James M. pointed out, parity is the original content of the story, not revenge. Revenge is an important component of deterring vigilantism, but it is not as key to the concept of justice as parity is. Parity is linked to equity and equity is linked to fairness and fairness is the very spirit of justice. Some situations are such that the victim can never truly be made whole again, but creating another societal burden solely in the name of parity is not justice. It’s counterproductive. In those instances the socially responsible and just thing to do is to make the victim as whole as possible at the expense of the perpetrator without creating a further undue burden on society as a whole.

  5. The logistics of requiring a perpetrator to make up for the damage done to a victim would be pretty complex, especially over time. How, for e.g., could someone who’s blinded another provide “restitution,” buy a seeing-eye dog? Lead the blind victim around for the rest of his life, and provide vivid descriptions of everything he sees?
    Simply blinding the perpetrator would be so much quicker and easier.

  6. What is sorely lacking is restitution. If you cut off my hand what good is it to me to have your hand cut off? Wouldn’t I be much better served if you were required to use your hand to benefit me by working to provide for me now that I am not able to?

  7. I’m sure most of the other lawyers on here know this already, but:

    People today think of the idea of an eye for an eye as barbarous, but it was originally a measure of restraint and justice — stopping the homicidal impulse to kill someone who blinded an eye (or paralyzed you), and ensuring the punishment fit the crime.

    Here, the defendant “paralyz[ed] a man with a cleaver” and was released after 7 months. If that’s true, that is a horrible miscarriage of justice and gives me great sympathy for the victim and his family who are looking for the defendant to be appropriately punished.

    I’d much rather see a robust criminal justice system with appropriate safeguards, but in the absence of that, if the availability of this type of eye-for-an-eye punishment will keep the family of the victim from simply murdering the defendant, I think the rule lives up to its original intent.

  8. amati1684 1, August 20, 2010 at 12:58 pm

    Barbarity aside, the first thing I thought was how could medical personnel agree to carry out such a sentence?


    I was at a wedding a few years ago that was also attended by the doctor who then administered the lethal injections for the Illinois prison system. My point is that we do something similar here. Societies and individuals find ways to convince themselves that it’s acceptable.

    Have any doctors been stripped of their licenses for participating in US torture of prisoners?

  9. If people aren’t aware women did not get the right to vote until 1918. Excuse me that is white women. All others had the right to, now whether they were able to exercise that right is a difference. So don’t be so righteous about what you think Jefferson did or did not think. He also advocated owning slaves, freeing them only upon his death. FYI he died with an STD.

  10. Barbarity aside, the first thing I thought was how could medical personnel agree to carry out such a sentence? Does it not violate every medical ethic there is? (And yes, the the same question applies to American physicians who were present during CIA torture sessions; yet another glaring investigative failure of the Obama administration). Who knows what threats could meet the doctors and nurses who would dare to raise objections; on the other hand, they might just scrub up and get to it.

    I thought public stonings and amputations were the extreme borders of Sharia law. This latest case is truly stunning.

  11. What’s the point of quoting Jefferson or our Constitution when talking about Saudi Arabia? Theirs is a very different culture: Sharia law, women not allowed to drive, have barely any citizenship rights, the only country on the planet named for a single family, which rules with an iron hand, etc.
    Thousands of American soldiers have died defending Saudi Arabia, and the only reason we pay them any attention is because of our insatiable thirst for oil.

  12. Im sorry but I have to say as screwed up as most religions are…this goes beyond the pale…shit Im just speachless.

  13. Exactly Buddha. We agree but for differing reasoning and results. No clerical involvement in secular events or vice a versa. Period.

  14. AY,

    I’m going to have to disagree about Jefferson. I think this sort of theocratic barbaric nonsense is something he would have resoundingly condemned. Think about his arguments for separation of church and state and you’ll see this kind of behavior is part and parcel of why he wanted separation. It wasn’t just to protect religious practice from the state, but to protect the citizens from theocratic oppression under the color of state authority.

  15. One of the numerous misunderstandings about Old Testament scriptures is the verse you mention.

    Exodus 21:23-25 But if there is harm, then you shall pay life for life, eye for eye, tooth for tooth, hand for hand, foot for foot, burn for burn, wound for wound, stripe for stripe.

    Consider for a moment these verses:

    Leviticus 20:10 “If a man commits adultery with the wife of his neighbor, both the adulterer and the adulteress shall surely be put to death.

    2 Samuel 12:13 David said to Nathan, “I have sinned against the LORD.” And Nathan said to David, “The LORD also has put away your sin; you shall not die.

    What people fail to realize is that the punishments listed in the scriptures are akin to maximum sentences that judges can issue to a convicted individual. Our very nature demands much more punishment for a crime then we ourselves suffered because of our desire for vengeance. Just as an “eye for an eye” actually means that no more than an eye for an eye can be assigned for punishment, so to do the numerous death sentences issued indicate the maximum allowed penalty for a crime against God.

  16. Thanks Puzzling…It would probably not amaze you of how many people are in prison serving life sentences that are actually innocent of “This” charge. It has been my experience where some prosecutors have said well, they might not be guilty of this charge but they are guilty of something….

  17. Speaking of show trials, how many state governments alongside North Carolina are guilty of systematically using fraudulent forensic science to score convictions and executions?

    Review finds flawed NC cases, including executions

    RALEIGH, N.C. — Analysts at North Carolina’s crime lab omitted, overstated or falsely reported blood evidence in dozens of cases, including three that ended in executions and another where two men were imprisoned for murdering Michael Jordan’s father, according to a scathing review released Wednesday.
    The government-ordered inquest by two former FBI officials found that agents of the State Bureau of Investigation repeatedly aided prosecutors in obtaining convictions over a 16-year period, mostly by misrepresenting blood evidence and keeping critical notes from defense attorneys.

  18. Barbaric.

    And yet most Americans actively support the institutionalized torture of so-called terrorist suspects by our government. We don’t like to call this “justice” – since that would confirm our own barbarism – but “intelligence.”

  19. As a humanitarianism and sometimes not very good at that. I find this request offensive as he has already been punished, by imprisonment. I subscribe to the double jeopardy clause of the constitution I grew up with and learned most of its fine points a few years ago. (I have also learned that it can be conditional based upon the judge in the case). However, what I do not agree with is the veritable entanglement of our societal values entrenched in what one follows as a religious practice, custom or belief that may not agree with what we have been taught.

    I was not raised in this belief, my beliefs have changed based upon information provided. While I may find this behavior and request offensive, is it for me to say that it is not against the religion that they practice? And therefore Justifiable?

    Folks want to get in arms about statements, writing of what we have been taught were learned scholars like Franklin, Jefferson, Hamilton and others, what they would say and what they would do. Here is a situation that I think Jefferson, would not care for it, but would not let his beliefs dictate what is most prescient in their custom as it is not for him to divine.

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